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From the President
  • President's Theme: Plant Connecticut: Be a Conservation Champion
    Conserve Water - Assist Pollination - Garden Naturally
    To participate in the 2017-2019 state project, click here.

  • 2016-2017 Annual Report

(*Annual Reports from previous years are archived here.)

President's Message (from the NEWS)

Happy Spring!

As I write on the final day of winter, the world outside seems to be covered in meringue with a few pieces of glass sprinkled on top. Even the paw prints of the beautiful red fox, which has a regular path through my yard, don't show on the glossy surfaces I see from my windows. But spring is here as you read this and the crocuses and snowdrops are re-appearing as are all the other signs that make April a month of hope and renewal. Buds on the trees are ready to burst, we hope not too soon to harm all the delicious crops we anticipate this summer. It is a glorious time of year in Connecticut.

The last Friday in April is always the official Arbor Day in Connecticut. So as part of my last message as your Federation President, I urge you to celebrate this day and Earth Day in your communities and to encourage the continual planting of trees. The Arbor Day Foundation can provide inexpensive seedlings as gifts for children to turn the day into a great celebration in your neighborhood. I still get much satisfaction checking out the growth of the white pine seedling given to me in Pittsburgh on the very first celebration of Earth Day (I date myself!). It stands regally where it was planted at my family's summer cottage on Chautauqua Lake in western New Your State. And nearby are the many trees my dad and brother and I dug in the woods and planted in the yard. Inspire your children to become involved with nature. It can have a lasting impact on them, as these activities had for me in years past. Their interest in the environment is important for their future.

I'm so pleased that so many of you have taken up the offer of planting a native oak tree during my two-year term. We have planted a forest of oaks across the state. Final numbers cannot be determined now since the deadline is just as this letter must be sent, but I will report on the totals in a few weeks at the Annual Meeting. A lot of tiny acorns are on their way to becoming mighty oaks!

It has been a pleasure and honor to serve as your president these past two years. Our organization has real impact on our communities and I'm always proud to represent The Federation wherever I go or to whomever I speak. And it's a joy to spend time with all of you. We share such rich experience and commitment to improving our world: aesthetically, environmentally, and by encouraging our youth. Thank you for allowing me to lead this fine group and for including me in so many of your activities. We have had a wonderful time "growing together"!

* Jane


Photos by Ellie Tessmer and Collage by Inge Venus.





FGCCT Honors Jacqueline Connell

The Harbor Lights Were Shining Brightly at

Greetings Fellow Gardeners!

It might have been frigid outside, but it was warm and wonderful at The Federation's State Flower Show, "Ports of Call," Feb 19-22 at the CT Convention Center in Hartford. Inspired by exotic ports around the world, the Floral Designs were stunning, the Horticulture shimmered and the Photography and Special Exhibits were fascinating. Many, many thanks to Show Chair, Barbara Bruce, and her legions of Exhibitors, Judges, Hostesses and Volunteers. It took much more than a village to put on this visual and fragrant extravaganza. Visitors were transported in their imaginations to dreamy climes around the globe. Congratulations on its grand success to everyone who helped with the show and to all who entered designs, plants, photography and special exhibits-we thank you for the superb adventure.

Left to Right: Becky Paul passing the legacy on to "Ports of Call" Chair, Barbara Bruce; Opening ceremony with Roger Swain; North East Expos President Kristie Gonsalves; FGCCT President Jacqueline Connell and FS Chair Barbara Bruce;
Award of Horticultural Excellence and Grower's Choice Award for Clivia by Ginni Donovan, Cheshire GC and Suburban GC of Cheshire.

From Left to Right: Club Competition Award: Vignette "Adventures in Africa" by Evergreen GC; President Susan Fisher. Designers Susan Jackson, Sally Whipple. Missing from photo: Joan Merman and Rita Patrello. Section A, Class 3 "Coral Fringed Barbados" by Alice Luster. Designer's Choice Award; Terry Stoleson Creative Design Award; and Award of Design Excellence. Educational Top Exhibitor Award for "The Plight of the Magnificent Monarchs" by Pomperaug Valley GC; Designer Marty Sherman.

From left to Right: CT Photography Award to Susan Berensen for "Vacation Memories." Landscape Design Council Award presented to Creative Contours for Landscape #15.Artistic Crafts Award to Mary Pura, Danbury GC, for "Lei."

Photos by Becky Paul, Leslie Martino and Inge Venus.

Show Committee - The Crew

President - Jacqueline Connell
General Chairman, Schedule & Treasurer -
Barbara Bruce
Northeast Expos Liaison - Jane Waugh
Design Coordinator - Barbara Bosco
Horticulture Coordinator - Ronnie Schoelzel
Special Exhibits - Maureen Carson
Photography - Leslie Martino & Jacqueline Connell
Floor Plan - Alice & Duane Luster
Design Classification - Terry Stoleson & Maria Nahom
Horticulture Classification - Rodney Hayes & Felise Cressman
Staging - Pat Dray & MaryEllen Unger
Design Entries Facilitator - Jan Hickcox
Horticulture Entries - Cindy Marien
Painting - Kathrine Neville
Design Quality Control - Ellen Clarke
Horticulture Entries Facilitator - Cordalie Benoit
Horticulture Placement - Kathrine Neville
Signs & Entry Cards - MaryEllen Unger
Administration/Formatting - Donna Nowak
Judges - Trish Manfredi
Awards - Alison Feaster & Kathie Skinner
Walk-in Horticulture Entries - Ellie Tessmer
Judges Clerks - Margareta Kotch
Publicity - Rebecca Paul
Comment Cards - Kris Urbanik
Hospitality - Sophie Kelley
Hostesses - Cathy Ritch
Membership - Leslie Martino
Books - Nancy Cebik & Sally Kuslis


Connecticut Landscape Design School March 24-26

March in The Federation means another Landscape Design Study School is coming. Landscape Chair, Susan Laursen, and her committee will present Course I March 24-26. While the courses may be taken in any order, Course I is the perfect place to start. It covers such varied topics as the development of design, principles and elements of landscape design, including space and color, the site plan, the role of designers and available resources. We are delighted to be back in our "home away from home" at the CT Agricultural Experiment Station in New Haven. Join us and learn how to integrate effective design into your home landscape or a club or town project.

SAVE THE DATE: April 15 for FGCCT's Annual Meeting at Aqua Turf

Please attend the State Annual Meeting at Aqua Turf in Plantsville on April 15 to inaugurate our new State President, Jane Waugh, and her in-coming Administration.

We are most fortunate to have Candace Morgenstern as our featured program speaker. Candace brings both a wealth of experience and a fresh approach to Floral Design. For years a Judge and National Board Member, former State President of RI, a leader of the American delegation of the World Association of Flower Arrangers (WAFA), Candace is sure to dazzle us with her innovative arrangements. Don't miss this very special opportunity to experience one of the East Coast's most accomplished designers.

Share the Best of Yourself: Be a Mentor

Many of our clubs will be changing officers and committee chairs this spring. If you hold one of these key positions, please help create a smooth transition and a nurturing environment by serving as a Mentor to your successor. You have spent the last couple of years or more learning the "tricks of the trade," the intricacies of your particular office--these are rich and vital commodities. When you take your successor under your wing, you, your successor, and your club will all be winners.

Happy Vernal Equinox, Happy Spring!

* Jacqueline Connell




So many clubs have been supportive of our Science Center Children’s Garden by sending in donations. We welcome other clubs to join in.
This endeavor will be so rewarding to families visiting the center. For a complete list of clubs that have donated check our website

A special thank you goes to Chair Dee Mozzocchi, and to Kathrine Neville and her committee for working on the exciting garden plans.



Copyright © The Federated Garden Clubs of Connecticut, Inc.
Last updated
April 22, 2017